Patients’ health threatened by surgical errors

March 6, 2020 | Crandall & Pera Law
Patients’ health threatened by surgical errors

If you go in for surgery with an Ohio specialist, you expect to receive competent, respectful care that provides a long-term solution for your pain or illness. Unfortunately, not all surgeons live up to the standards of the profession, and the results for patients can be devastating. Any surgery poses a risk, but that risk is significantly compounded when a negligent physician is involved. While diagnostic errors are the top cause of medical malpractice claims, surgical errors are the second most common reason for these claims.

Surgical performance main reason for malpractice claims

In one study conducted by a liability insurer, researchers found that one-quarter of all claims were linked to surgical errors. Of these, 78% were related to the surgeon's performance during the procedure. There were other serious causes of patient injuries as well, including poor recovery care or the decision to order surgery itself if it was actually unnecessary or an inappropriate procedure to treat the patient's condition. Some types of surgery were more prone to negative outcomes and medical malpractice claims, including general surgery, orthopedic surgery and neurosurgery, which together comprised almost half of the claims.

Surgical errors can have severe effects

Many patients suffered severe, complex injuries as a result of negligent surgeons or other surgical errors. Of these claims, 29% involved people who suffered permanent significant injuries, while 9% involved patient deaths. In almost 40% of cases, patients alleged that their surgeon did not have sufficient technical skill and knowledge to perform the procedure correctly, while 27% involved poor medical judgment. Other cases were more dramatic; in 7% of cases, patients were left with foreign bodies inside after surgery. Unnecessary procedures were involved in 4% of cases, while 3% involved surgeries performed on the wrong patient or the wrong location. A surgical error can lead to long-lasting, complex health conditions that require ongoing treatment or additional procedures to correct, while others may never be possible to fully address. If you have suffered a worsened health condition as a result of a doctor's error, a medical malpractice attorney may review your case and help you take action to seek compensation.